1pointsize, the Chennai-based creative shop, is on a slow and relaxed, yet steady, roll. In the last three months, the agency has been entrusted with the creative duties of Arihant Builders, Kerala Jewellers, Life Cell (an umbilical cord blood preservation company), and PCPS, an IT retailing company. The five-member shop continues to handle Perri Alley, Pothy's (Textile brands), and Derby among other clients.
Sharad Haksar, CEO, 1pointsize, said that it might be wrong to say 'wins', because all the clients and brands we handle have come to us on their own. Speaking to exchange4media, he said, "Most of our clients are people who ask us to handle their advertising without us asking for that. For example, Kerala Jewellers contacted us for a shoot, and eventually asked us to handle creative. It was almost the same with Arihant."
The shop does not get into ad releases at all, according to Haksar. The extent of involvement is so high, though, that they advise the client on the timing, frequency and spread of campaigns. While they do not believe in a rigid billing system, they arrive at a mutually comfortable arrangement with the client.
On all of the shop's clients being Chennai-based, Haksar said, "We do get calls from other cities. But there needs to be a fit with our style of working. We don't even have a servicing team. I meet clients but only when its necessary to meet them. We don't send a servicing person to the client with layouts before creating the work. We try to finish the job and then show it to the client. Its based on a comfort and trust built with our clients."
Haksar said that judging the worth of an agency by the volume of work it churns out and the media spends by clients is wrong. "We don't mind having 50 small clients with spends of say, one crore rupee each, who totally believe in us, rather than have two clients who add up to that volume but with whom we end up compromising on work we sincerely believe in."
Derby, with an estimated ad spend of Rs 75 lakh last year, and Perri Alley with Rs 40 lakh don't seem like the kind of clients some of the larger agencies would vie for. The agency's clients may be smaller in comparison in terms of revenue, but the recognition 1pointsize has got for its work is phenomenal. A nomination at D&AD, a bronze and three nominations at the New York festivals, and more recently agency of the year at SPARK 2005, make 1pointsize's list of awards a much-envied one even for the established full-service agencies. It simply proves that it would be wrong to assume that this two-year-old agency is in its infancy.
"We're not looking to grow too big too fast," he said. "After clients work with us for a couple of years, they leave the creative thinking on the brand to us. We take a call on many things in consultation with them after a point. The end result is that I am a part of the client's organisation handling the advertising and marketing functions, rather than being a supplier," he added.
A campaign for Kerala jewellers is currently on, for an anniversary sale between April 1 and 20, after that the shop is all set to launch a brand campaign for the Jewellers. In the meantime, the creative shop and their CEO eagerly await verdicts from the international advertising awards.